Research Pillars

indicator-themes-March-2014How would you determine our region’s vitality? The Columbia Basin Rural Development Institute at Selkirk College has established a four pillar approach that takes into account a wide range of factors to better understand our region. These four pillars of well-being – economic, social, cultural and environmental – each play an interrelated and vital role in our quality of life.


Within each pillar are a series of themes and a suite of indicators, which collectively serve to present an overall picture of our region’s vitality. These indicators provide the basis for the extensive applied research that the RDI undertakes, using data analysis to build an up-to-date and dynamic picture of the vitality of communities in the Columbia Basin Boundary region, as well as to better understand emerging trends. Information is reported in several formats as part of the State of the Basin Initiative, including Annual Snap Shot reports, Long Reports (released every 5 years following the Census) Trends Analysis Briefs, and the online Digital Basin portal.  Data layers are added to the Digital Basin on an ongoing basis as guided by the RDI Assets & Indicators Decisionmaking Process & Matrix.

Our Economy

Economic1Of the many factors that collectively influence our level of well-being, there is one that resonates deeply with most families: the economy. It’s a common theme whenever we discuss the resources and services available in our communities or the ability of parents to provide for their children. And ultimately, the economy is affected by a diverse range of factors. [More]

Our Society

Our SocietyThere are a wide variety of dynamics that affect our social well-being, but the most consequential originate close to home. They also affect every member of our communities, from the youngest to oldest, right from the earliest stages in their development to their later years in life. – [More]

Our Culture

Our CultureCulture is a relatively new pillar in RDI’s State of the Basin well-being research. It is an area both difficult to define and understand because culture often means different things to different people. It is individual, but also collective; it is deeply personal, but also shared. Any understanding of culture involves our own sense of self and our connections to family and friends, broader ethnic and social groups, and our communities and region as a whole. [More]

Our Environment

Our EnvironmentFrom the quality of the air we breathe to the condition of the landscape where we live and work, we all experience the daily effects of the environment on our health and well-being. Residents of Columbia Basin Boundary communities already know we live in a beautiful part of the world, but it’s crucial, both for present and future generations, that we are aware of the state of the environment so that forthcoming policy decisions are well-informed. [More]

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